On January 3, The CW announced a potential Batwoman series to the DCTV universe, and that the titular character, played by Ruby Rose, would be the first openly lesbian leading hero. Just weeks later on Jan 22, the CW released a first look at “Dreamer,” a trans action hero to make her appearance on Supergirl on Feb 17. Nicole Maines, the transgender actress who has played Nia Nial on the show since late 2018, will transform into her super alter ego “Dreamer” for the first time, a change fans have been eager to see onscreen. She will be the first transgender action hero in a TV series and it is a move the network is taking seriously.
The CW makes a point to cast representative actors to play representative characters, as seen with the choice to cast Ruby Rose as Batwoman. Back when Nia Nial was brought on to the show, The CW made a point to cast a trans actress. Executive Producer Greg Berlanti showed interest in casting a transgender actress in the role as far back as May 2018 at a DC in D.C. event.
“We don’t have an active trans character across the shows, you know. And we had a trans actress playing a trans character in a show I did that was not a superhero show, eleven years ago. And so I still feel behind the times every day on that issue.”
The casting of Rose and Maines in roles that seek to represent the LBGTQIA+ community is part of an, albeit small, movement in Hollywood to seek appropriate representation for roles that have historically been played by heterosexual or cisgender actors/actresses. It is a small step, but the CW seems to be leading the charge on this front.
Supergirl airs on the CW on Sundays at 8pm EST.